After human rights activist Vera Lengsfeld published an article on the steep increase of censorship complaints against the news article discussion section of German email provider GMX, users wrote to her to report on a much more sinister manipulation effort.
Emails that are not flagged by the user as spam are still moved to the spam folder. Most often the emails in question are newsletters, not just any newsletters, only those that appear to come from conservative senders. The emails typically come from AfD politicians, from MP Erika Steinbach (Merkel’s party CDU), from Jewish columnist Henryk Broder, or even from Lengsfeld herself.
GMX belongs to United Internet AG whose owner Ralph Dommermuth donated € 500.000 to Merkel’s party, probably the largest single donation to any party this year.
Ralph Dommermuth is founder of pressure group ‘Wir zusammen’, a network of companies that claims to serve in the interest of refugees. Most large, notable companies in Germany have signed up to it.
Mr Dommermuth is one of the richest people in the world. Forbes estimates his worth at $4.2 billion. The name of his initiative ‘Wir zusammen’ translates to ‘we together’, which makes it very difficult to find additional information on their finances, their activities, their scandals and so on.
Vera Lengsfeld is a human rights activist once jailed for quoting publicly the constitution of the Eastern German dictatorship on free speech. After her release she studied theology at Oxford and became a member of parliament for the Green Party. She left the Greens for the then conservative party CDU which she is still a critical member of.